Although political advertising from China is banned in Taiwanese news media, rules on advertisements for Chinese products could be relaxed, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Vice Chairman Liu Te-shun (劉德勳) said.
“With ever-increasing exchanges across the Taiwan Strait, we need to revise the restrictions on Chinese product commercials in Taiwanese media,” Liu said.
He added, however, that “political advertising will remain fully excluded from Taiwanese media.”
Liu made the comments after the MAC on Thursday fined the Chinese-language China Times daily newspaper for printing a series of advertisements promoting the logo of China’s Strait Forum, printing the forum’s invitation card and several advertisements in the form of news reports on Tuesday and Wednesday last week, and again on Monday.
“This kind of advertising, although packaged in the form of news reports, must not be published in Taiwan and those accountable should be punished,” he said, adding that “any Taiwanese media outlet will be fined up to NT$500,000 if they are caught running Chinese advertisements of this kind.”
The Strait Forum conference, organized by the Taiwan Office of Beijing’s State Council and the Fujian provincial government, is scheduled to be held in Fuzhou, China, in the middle of this month.
Liu said the government would consider easing regulations on advertisements placed by Chinese companies in local media amid growing cross-strait exchanges.
The kinds of commercials that would be allowed depended on “whether the products being advertised are permitted to be marketed here,” Liu said.
For instance, commercials for food supplements marketed as health foods would fall under the oversight of the Department of Health, while real-estate advertisements would be banned on the grounds that the products being advertised are not available in Taiwan, he said.